Last year, the Halloween season was dominated by COVID vaccination concerns and social distancing. This year, things are a bit different. 68% of Americans are fully vaccinated, and 33% are boosted, restoring some normalcy. However, as Halloween bashes and trick-or-treating plans ramp up, it’s critical to remember that people are still at risk of catching COVID and other illnesses.

What’s the most effective way to balance this desire for complete normalcy with the need to stay safe during Halloween against illnesses such as COVID? Here are six tips for a Covid-free Halloween.

1. When you get a flu shot, get your updated COVID-19 booster shot too.

The current booster, also known as a bivalent vaccine, protects us against the Omicron variant. Although symptoms are milder than the original strains of COVID, Omicron variants are highly transmissible, so it’s easier to catch it. Additionally, flu season has begun.

Getting a flu shot and bivalent COVID booster dose together is smart. However, please note that it generally takes two weeks for their full effects to appear in our system. Although no vaccine is 100% effective, it reduces the severity of illness compared to those who are not vaccinated.

2. Decide how much risk you are comfortable with.

As a result of COVID, people were more sensitive to physical proximity with others, especially strangers. As a result, it became a common practice to keep a distance of at least six feet from others in public.

Despite the risks, we are becoming better at analyzing our own risks. As more people are vaccinated, we may better communicate what level of risk is comfortable for us with people we know.

You will stay safer if you wear a mask and keep your distance from others regardless of whether you attend a Halloween party or trick-or-treat with neighbors. Unfortunately, there are no mask mandates in place currently, so it’s up to you.

3. Be quick with your candy exchanges.

No doubt leaving candy out on the steps is the safest option, but if you love giving candy away on Halloween, you can choose to do so. It remains a low-risk Halloween activity.

COVID-19 is a transmissible respiratory virus, so touching candy wrappers and letting a child touch them isn’t generally an effective way of transmitting the virus. As a result, most trick-or-treating encounters are brief. 

If you are handing out candy, you might want to wear a mask; however, the minimal exposure offers a relatively risk-free activity.

4. When possible, wash your hands well and use hand sanitizer.

We stay healthier by washing our hands and not touching our faces. To avoid spreading illnesses, use hand sanitizer after shaking hands and before handling food if you lack access to soap and water. 

Sanitizing can even be fun and fall-themed. Take advantage of the fall-themed soaps available at stores, including apple cider and pumpkin spice scents.

5. It’s still okay for you to wear a mask.

It seems that masking up is a thing of the past unless you are in a medical facility. Wearing a mask, however, is a perfectly acceptable action if that’s what you need.

It is possible to protect yourself from infection if you put on a mask, even though most mask mandates have been lifted. You can still wear a mask to lower your risk, especially if you are at higher risk for severe illnesses. Respect those wearing masks. They may need to be extra careful because of a health condition.

6. Reduce your risk by attending smaller parties.

You may feel more comfortable attending smaller parties with like-minded people with similar Covid-19 risk levels. It’s easier to trace illnesses in smaller numbers, and it’s easier to control your environment when there are fewer people.

WeShield hopes you have a safe and fun Halloween by following our recommendations! Furthermore, WeShield strives to provide clients with accurate information promptly. Our website has information on the COVID-19 pandemic and FDA-approved personal protective equipment.